WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) has joined his colleagues in introducing legislation to permanently fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). Brown’s bill, the Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act, will help ensure LWCF can continue to support State Parks, national parks, national forests and other public lands. In addition to helping our National Park Service and other public lands agencies, the conservation efforts funded through this program provide state and local governments with the tools and resources to create and add to their own parks and recreation areas. These protected areas help preserve native wildlife, habitats and safeguard lands and waters for future generations.
“Ohioans depend on access to public lands for outdoor recreation, community events and local jobs,” said Brown. “Permanently funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund will support Ohio economies and protect our natural resources for future generations.”
LWCF has provided over $190 million to over 1,200 projects in state, local, and federal parks and recreation areas across Ohio, including the following sites:
- Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial
- Buffington Island Battlefield
- Cuyahoga Valley National Park
- Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park
- Fallen Timbers Battlefield
- Hopewell Culture National Historical Park
- James A Garfield National Historic Site
- Little Beaver Creek Wild and Scenic River
- Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge
- Vinton Furnace Experimental Forest
- Wayne National Forest
- Delaware Reservoir State Park
- Old Man’s Cave, Hocking Hills State Park
- Kelley’s Island
- Olentangy River Trails, Columbus
- Geneva on the Lake Park
- Beaver Creek State Park
- Stonelick State Park
- Riverfront Park, Cincinnati
A number of organizations are supporting Brown’s legislation, including The Nature Conservancy and the Ohio Conservation Federation.
“We applaud Senator Sherrod Brown for co-sponsoring legislation to permanently fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at $900 million a year. The Land and Water Conservation Fund Permanent Funding Act will help ensure LWCF can continue to conserve natural areas that people, wildlife and local economies need. For over half a century, LWFC has protected lands and waters in every county in every state in this country. Ohioans deserve the opportunity to enjoy places protected or improved using LWCF funds, from important rural natural areas to community parks and ball fields. LWCF is too important to continue leaving its future in doubt. Now is the time to give LWCF the permanent funding it deserves,” said Bill Stanley, State Director of The Nature Conservancy in Ohio.
“LWCF has enhanced outdoor recreation opportunities in every county of the U.S., and Ohio is no exception. Ohio's hunters, anglers, and trappers benefit from LWCF's dollars; from controlled hunts on the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge, to trapping in the Wayne National Forest, to fishing from LWCF funded boat ramps. The Ohio Conservation Federation thanks Senator Brown for his support and co-sponsorship of this vital legislation,” said Matt Misicka, President of the Ohio Conservation Federation.
Brown has long to fought support LWCF, securing a provision in the Natural Resources Management Act to permanently reauthorize funds for the program, which was signed into law in March. The bill created 1.3 million acres of new wilderness lands, establishes five new national monuments, and expands several major national parks.